Update for switching from a Tier 4 Student Visa to Tier 2 Work Visa within the UK

We have previously written about the eligibility requirements and benefits of switching from a Tier 4 Student Visa into to Tier 2 Work Visa from within the UK. From 11 January 2018, the Immigration Rules update per the recent statement of changes will be implemented, which will see changes in relation to the eligibility requirements for Tier 4 Students wishing to switch to a Tier 2 Work Visa from within the UK.

The update for switching from a Tier 4 Student Visa into a Tier 2 Work Visa from within the UK

One of the requirements for switching from a Tier 4 Student Visa into a Tier 2 Work Visa is that the Applicant must have successfully completed and passed a UK recognised Bachelor’s or Master’s degree, postgraduate certificate in education or professional graduate diploma of education, or have completed a minimum of 12 months study in the UK towards a UK PhD during the Applicant’s current period of leave or a period of continuous leave and provide their original degree certificate in evidence of this.

However, from 11 January 2018, Tier 4 Students wishing to switch to a Tier 2 Work Visa from within the UK will no longer be required to demonstrate that they have “completed and passed” a UK recognised Bachelor’s or Master’s degree and instead will only have to prove that they have completed a course “leading” to those recognised Bachelor’s or Master’s degrees. Therefore, Tier 4 Students will not have to wait for their results before making their Tier 2 Work Visa application from within the UK.

The definition of “completion of a course”

Completion of a course is not defined in the Immigration Rules and it is therefore not clear whether the update will clarify the position of Tier 4 Students who have upcoming resit exams confirmed before submitting their Tier 2 Work Visa application. In these instances, where a Tier 4 Student waiting to take resits do not have enough leave in the UK in order to sit their resit exam and the sponsoring institution is unable to extend the Tier 4 Student visa, the student could switch into a short-term student visa, although this cannot be extended or switch into another category of leave to remain within the UK. Some of the benefits of switching from a Tier 4 Student Visa into a Tier 2 Work Visa include:

  • The application to switch from a Tier 4 Student Visa into Tier 2 General Work Visa is made within the UK and therefore an Entry Clearance Tier 2 General Work Visa application is not required. This can be more convenient for Tier 4 Students who are already in the UK and it is not convenient for them to leave in order to submit a fresh visa application;
  • As the Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) is not subject to a national annual limit, it is likely to be issued quicker; and
  • Family Members of Tier 4 Students looking to switch into a Tier 2 Work Visa may be able to apply in their own right.

It is important to contact our specialist immigration team before switching from a Tier 4 Student Visa into a Tier 2 Work Visa as the UK’s Immigration Rules are complex and can be difficult to understand. We have a great deal of experience and success with Applicants switching visas from within the UK and it is important for Applicants to get a successful result and not risk any visa application being refused due to not fully understanding the requirements.

Using Legal Representation to switch from a Tier 4 Student Visa into a Tier 2 Work Visa within the UK

Legal representatives, such as our specialist immigration and visa law firm, are qualified to advise you on immigration law and your immigration status. It is possible to instruct an immigration and visa legal representative to switch from a Tier 4 Student Visa into a Tier 2 Work Visa within the UK.

Caseworkers at the Home Office are trained to reject applications which are improperly prepared, for example by failing to provide the correct supporting evidence. In order to ensure your application succeeds, all necessary documents must be provided. This can be a significant administrative task and you will need to submit the correct documentary evidence. The UK Immigration Rules are complex and a legal representative can help ensure that your application meets the Immigration Rules.

Successfully switch from a Tier 4 Student Visa into a Tier 2 Work Visa within the UK

Our team of solicitors and barristers are specialist immigration lawyers who act in your best interest. We offer a client-tailored approach from the outset. From the very first meeting, we will be able to advise you in respect of your immigration status and the merit of your visa and immigration application before your matter even reaches the Home Office UK Visa & Immigration department. We can assist you with the preparation of your immigration and visa application and ensure that you meet all the requirements of the relevant rules.

We are based in the legal epicentre of London, just across the road from the Royal Courts of Justice in order to ensure we get the best results for our clients.  We are minutes away from the Immigration and Asylum Tribunal, the Royal Courts of Justice and other central London courts.

Preparation is the key to successful immigration applications. Our UK immigration and visa solicitors are here to guide you through the complex immigration rules and requirements. If you wish to meet one of our lawyers, please call our Immigration Team so we can assess your case and arrange your legal consultation.

Contact our London immigration solicitors on 02071830570 or complete our contact form.

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